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Constructed Wetlands for Water Pollution Control (2015)

Name of course:  Constructed Wetlands for Water Pollution Control

ECTS credits:   5

Course parameters:

Language: English

Level of course: PhD course

Time of year:  18-24 October 2015

No. of contact hours/hours in total: 50 contact hours/120 hours in total, incl. preparation and report

Capacity limits: 24 participants

Objectives of the course:

The aim of the course is to provide participants with

(i)         an overview of different types of constructed wetland systems, their applicability and their limitations

(ii)       a thorough understanding of the processes of importance for the transformation and removal of nutrients and various pollutants in wetlands,

(iii)     the capability to prepare draft designs of constructed wetland systems for specific application using commonly accepted design tools

(iv)      an overview of current research needs, methodologies and options.

Learning outcomes and competences:

At the end of the course, the student should be able to:

(i)       characterize biogeochemical processes of importance for nutrient removal in wetlands,

(ii)       describe the functional role of different types of wetland plants in wetlands,

(iii)     describe different types of constructed wetland systems, their applicability and limitations,

(iv)      characterize the hydraulics of constructed wetland systems

(v)        characterize pollutant removal pathways and removal kinetics

(vi)      prepare initial draft designs of constructed wetland systems for wastewater treatment

Compulsory programme:  active participation, oral or poster presentation, report

Course contents:

The course will provide an overview of the ecology of freshwater wetlands including hydrology, wetland soil biogeochemistry, and wetland plant ecophysiology. The processes responsible for the transformation of organic matter, nutrients and micropollutants such as pharmaceuticals and personal care products in the wetland environment will be described. The state-of-the-art in design techniques based on hydraulics and pollutant removal models in different types of constructed wetland systems will be demonstrated. Practical design guidelines and management aspects such as system layout, compartmentalization, substrate selection, inlet and outlet structures, plant selection and planting will be presented. The use of constructed wetland for the treatment of different types of wastewaters, such as domestic and different types of industrial wastewaters, will be demonstrated through case-stories from around the World, included systems established in different climate (cold-temperate areas, sub-tropics and tropics, arid and semiarid areas). 

Prerequisites:  MSc or equivalent in relevant topic

Name of lecturers:

  • Dr. Carlos A. Arias, Ecological Engineer, Aarhus University (Denmark)
  • Dr. Hans Brix, Professor in Plant Ecophysiology, Aarhus University, Denmark
  • Dr. Carl Christian Hoffmann, Senior Researcher, Aarhus University, Denmark
  • Dr. Pedro Carvalho, PostDoc, Environmental Aarhus University, Denmark
  • Dr. Otto R. Stein, Professor in Civil Engineering, Montana State University, USA
  • Dr. Peder Gregersen, Centre for Recycling, Denmark
  • Dr. René Kilian, Kilian Water, Denmark

Type of course/teaching methods:

Teaching will be mainly through lectures. However, theoretical exercises and plenary discussions will also be arranged where participants will be required to prepare designs of wetland systems for the treatment of various types of contaminated water based on case-stories, and using existing design tools. Systems dealt with include surface flow and subsurface flow treatment wetlands, vertical flow systems, intensified constructed wetland systems, evaporative zero-discharge systems, free-floating macrophyte treatment systems, sludge treatment reed beds, stormwater treatment systems, and in-catchment agricultural runoff treatment systems. Excursions to full-scale constructed wetland systems will be arranged.


R.H. Kadlec and S. Wallace: Treatment Wetlands, 2nd edition. CRC Press, 2009

Course assessment:

Active participation, oral/poster presentation and report


Department of Bioscience

Time:  18-24 October 2015

Place: The course will be held at the Mols Laboratory ( in the Mols Bjerge National park (


The registration fee is 7.000 DKK (940 EUR) which covers participation in the course, including excursions, accommodation and all meals from dinner on 18 October till breakfast on 24 October.

For registration: Please register on this webshop before 4 August 2015:

You will be asked to provide a brief description of your academic background as well as the relevance of the course for you. Information regarding admission will be sent out no later than 10 August 2015.

Comments on content: 
Revised 16.05.2017